The Home of the Brave, the Land of the Free, and the Doormat of the National League* | Bleader

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Home of the Brave, the Land of the Free, and the Doormat of the National League*

Posted By on 04.01.10 at 01:45 PM

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The true nausea of Cubs fans, then, isn't their almost Calvinist belief that continued loss somehow grants them chosen status, but rather how contradictory this behavior is to their onanistic responses to victory. To live here is to be continually reminded how much of the baseball cake Cubs fans want to both have and eat—and worse, to see that many of these people appear to not even really enjoy cake! And use cake as an excuse to skip work and get drunk in the sun!

Local novelist Kyle Beachy describes the life of a Cardinals fan in Chicago—an existence I share (via @robmitchum).

I also share his lossless clarity of 10/14/03, aka the Bartman Game. Thing is, I'm hesitant to call it that—I still vividly recall ("like I was shot with a diamond... a diamond bullet right through my forehead") Alex S. Gonzalez subsequently botching a potential inning-ending double-play ball, one that may have prevented a brief, ugly period in Chicago baseball history, and thinking: this is Fate. Blaming Bartman for that loss is like blaming Gavrilo Princip for World War I.

I grew up watching the Cubbies on WGN, like every other kid who grew up outside a baseball market, but that was when I really understood them.

* Not long ago Steve Goodman was being talked up for some honor; I think it was a street name. Anyway, one or both of the local dailies introduced him as the guy who wrote "Go Cubs Go," which, as Beachy points out, not that it's not obvious, is a horrible travesty, and I say this as someone who likes Steve Goodman. Much better to remember him as the songwriter of "City of New Orleans" or "The Dying Cub Fan's Last Request" ("have the Cubbies run right out into the middle of the field / have Keith Moreland drop a routine fly").

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